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Video: Freight train derails in Montana river; area evacuated

A fire engine. (Dreamstime/TNS)
April 03, 2023

A train derailment in northwest Montana sent dozens of cars off the tracks on Sunday, dumping carloads of beer onto a riverbank and prompting the evacuation of people nearby.

No injuries were reported after about 25 cars derailed along the Clark Fork River near Paradise, Montana, the Associated Press reported.

Local authorities and the rail company, Montana Rail Link, determined that no hazardous materials were released or posing a threat to public safety, according to the Plains-Paradise Rural Fire District.

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The only “railcar of concern” was carrying butane and was partially derailed, but not leaking, according to the fire district. The cars that reached the river, spilling some of their contents onto the bank, were carrying Coors Light and Blue Moon beer.

“This is not floating down the river and is secured in the derailment area,” according to the fire district.

Guests staying at waterfront cabins in the area were evacuated as a precaution, the fire district stated.

The derailment occurred around 9:31 a.m. and brought response from two fire departments, at least 13 firefighters, and a local ambulance, according to the fire district.

The incident came days after a 31-car derailment in North Dakota spilled hazardous materials, though officials said there was no threat to the public, as reported by Valley News Live.

Train derailments have been closely watched since the February derailment in East Palestine, Ohio, which for weeks made headlines as residents feared contamination from chemicals that were deliberately burned off in some of the train cars.

This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.